From repurposed marble chips and clay to modern installation techniques and material technologies, terrazzo is having its moment. A rediscovered classic, it’s now popping up on floors and walls in modern homes.
For example, this sophisticated shower stall from home_and_things uses a subtle terrazzo wall with monochromatic specks. Try it in your bathroom, mudroom or sunroom.
The terrazzo trend is making its way to walls, benches, and even small decor accents like vases. And while it was once a popular flooring option that helped to define the Art Deco movement, modern terrazzo is embracing bold colors and unique aggregates to create a fresh look.
While traditional cement terrazzo was limited to basic grays and browns, the introduction of electric grinders and the development of metal strips that divided terrazzo into sections allowed for more color flexibility. This new approach to the speckled style has opened the door for designers to experiment with a wide range of exciting options.
Ceramic terrazzo has also become a popular design choice, with brands like Native producing faithful reproductions of genuine terrazzo in on-trend shades such as mint green and pale pink. In addition, porcelain versions offer more control over the aggregate and allow for more vibrant hues that elevate the classic hex pattern into a true design statement.
Terrazzo has made a strong comeback as a flooring material, but it’s also showing up in other surfaces like walls and countertops. Unlike quartz, a concrete based material, terrazzo can be formed into custom shapes to fit specific spaces and avoid waste. This gives designers more freedom to explore the color palettes and patterns that would be impossible with other materials.
The modern influences on this classic speckled pattern have led to more sophisticated looks that can work well with contemporary design and architecture. Darker colors, for example, support a more industrial style and add more visual texture to commercial or residential spaces.
These terrazzo designs are available in fabric by the yard, wallpaper and home decor items to help you bring this modern revival into your own space. Purchases support independent artists on Spoonflower’s growing community.
Add some boldness to your renders with this collection of 80 high-quality terrazzo materials. The color range includes a wide selection of bold tones inspired by mid-century modern design.
The modern version of the ancient composite material comes either as a poured-in-place monolithic system or precast in modular tiles. Unlike the original terrazzo, modern terrazzo uses concrete as a binder instead of marble chips and can be made using a wide range of aggregate materials including recycled glass, quartz, shell and even granite.
As an architectural material, terrazzo works well with warm colors and can complement rich stone elements. It can also be used to add visual texture to spaces that lack textural interest, such as this modern kitchen with flat-front cabinets. The terrazzo flooring in this example is tone-on-tone and serves to support the rich marble countertops rather than competing for attention. This is a great way to balance modern minimalism with inviting warmth.
In addition to being a beautiful flooring material, terrazzo is also used for walls, countertops, and benches. It pairs beautifully with warm color schemes, wood furniture, and rich wall colors and treatments.
First created in 16th century Italy, terrazzo was developed as a way to reuse marble offcuts. It is a composite material that includes durable stone chips set in either cement or epoxy. It can be poured in place or precast into blocks. and it is often used in large projects because of the speed and durability of the installation.
Although terrazzo has come a long way from clay and goat’s milk, modern-day techniques and materials are still used to achieve the same results. Polymers and resins are now added to the mix to reduce cracking, improve texture, and increase durability. And goat’s milk is a thing of the past, as today’s terrazzo requires no surface sealant to retain its lustrous shine. It is also non-porous, meaning it doesn’t require frequent cleaning or mopping.